Pre-Interview: I'm now in my 70s. Over 20 years ago, I started writing the sorts of stories that I wanted to read - stories where ordinary people do extraordinary things as their lives take unexpected twists and turns. My stories are brimming with all kinds of different people - LGBTQ2, straight, all colors, ages, shapes and sizes, sometimes from this world, other times not.
I believe good fiction should entertain and have a momentum of its own that will transport readers away from the stresses of their daily lives. In an age of rampant sexualization and violence across entertainment media, I offer an alternative: satisfying stories to sweep you up into a different world where people, much like you, overcome challenges and have remarkable adventures.
When I'm not writing, I'm reading, knitting, DIY-ing or dog walking on a small island at the bottom of a bay off the larger island of Newfoundland, Canada, where I live with my partner of 20+ years.
Author Writer Interview
1.What inspires you most to write?
It’s the characters in my head demanding I tell their story. If I’m too slow sometimes it’s hard to tell if I’m talking to the people in the room or in another world. Gets a bit interesting at times.
2. What is your favorite genre?
Fantasy/sci-fi for certain. I started there as a reader and moved into writing. I wrote romance for a few years, and sometimes think about having another go at it, but I always seem to end up talking to an Orc or an alien and …
3. Who is one author you admire if any and why?
Edgar Rice Burrows is where I started, and always return, Mercedes Lackey, Diana Paxon, … I could go on … and on …
4. How do you overcome blank writing spells?
I suffer, read constantly, whine, house clean, read more, and re-read everything I’ve ever written. Eventually it comes back, usually in a few days, but there was this one spell that lasted over two years.
5. What legal publishing advice can you give?
Legal? Don’t use anyone’s work but your own, not even a sentence you liked, or a certain phrase. Just don’t. Also read the contract before you sign it, understand your rights and obligations.
6. How many books have you written, are any a bestseller yet?
I think the count is over 65 novels so far. Two covers are carrying a bestseller badge that I didn’t put there, so I guess I can say two, SUVI and Lady Blue.
7. If you had the opportunity to rewrite one movie script which would it be, why?
Nope, sorry, not going there. Those aren’t my stories, and I won’t muck with or put down another artist’s work. (Okay, I’ll admit there are a few, but …)
8. What are some difficulties you've experienced in your writing career; how do you handle book critiques/criticism?
Some of the major difficulties revolve around time and family obligations. Some things just have to take priority. The old critiques/criticism thing? I hold the old adage in mind, you can’t please everybody, some people don’t like the way I write, others don’t like the plot, and yet others love them. I just write them, they’re stories, they’re part of me, but not everybody likes me either. (And there’s a few of them I squint at from time to time.)
9. What are your best experiences in your writing career?
When someone takes the time to write a review, and especially when someone tells me the book had a profound impact on their life, their world view. Those are the moments to cherish.
10. Do you prefer to write in silence and or have some sort sound in the background?
My place is nuts for noise, dogs, cats, people, and I work best with epic music blasting as well. Give me chaos and I can work. If things are too quiet, I get creeped out.
11. What are some encouraging words you'd give to another author/writer?
It’s your story, write it. The write the next one, and the next. You’re creating worlds, lives, events beyond imagining, you’re creating portals from this world to another, a way for anybody and everybody to escape to a new adventure. Just ignore those who say no, or you shouldn’t and write that story.
12. How did you decide the pricing of your material; how did you go about promotion/advertising and distribution of your work?
When I first started, I priced my work low, I was a beginner after all. As my skills improved, I began to ask a little more. Once I signed on with a publisher, they set the prices.
Advertising costs, and if you can’t afford to spend a lot (as I couldn’t and still can’t) then I’d say the best bet is to spend a bit of time on social media.
13. Why should anyone read your book?
Well, to start, you can leave this world and the stresses it engenders behind for a while. With my books you know going in you’ll eventually get a good resolution to the problems, no cliffhangers, not even in a series. Each book has a satisfactory conclusion. Be warned, most of my books contain LGBT+ characters and more. I believe in worlds where people are accepted as people. (Okay, I’m a dreamer.)
14. Did you have a book coach?
No, but I think it could have been useful. Hard to say at this point.
15. What was your favorite subject in school?
English lit, history.
16. Are you self-published or have an established publishing contract elsewhere?
I began as a self-published author, put out over twenty novels as an Indie then signed on with Shadoe Publishing and moved most of my work over to them. They’re great with covers and formatting which makes my life a lot easier. However, I’ve always kept something self-published, you know, just to keep up my indie status.